Today I was lucky enough to go on a Brit Movie tour of this very old unused tube station. I have always been interested in abandoned buildings and London transport services, so to be able to visit an unused tube station was really interesting to me.
Here is some of the history of the tube station:
The tube station was built in 1895 for theatre goers, but weirdly enough actually knocked down Strand theatre to build the station. It was originally built with enough space for six lift shafts. However two were completed and only one was ever used. Inside the entrance hall they had a shop and photo booth. The tiles that were in the entrance hall were metric, and before it became a listed building the tiles were changed to a lime green colour.
People entered and exited the building the same way because the station was never finished.
Within the lift, the operator would sell tickets. These days people would sit and wait in the lift for the train to leave holborn at which case the bell would ring in the lift and and lift operator would lower the lift onto the platform so that people were not waiting on the platform.
During world war 2, the government did not want people coming into the tube stations to take cover as they thought it was unsafe. Eventually they put in medical facilities and toilets in order for people to be safe. They closed down stations during this time and put hammocks within the tracks so that people could shelter from the war.
On the first platform was a 1972 final stock train from the piccadilly line. This line was now used mostly for training for staff of London transport. The line still is live however, many films have used this station to film at, so can be closed for this.
This platform was last used by the public in 1914 and closed eventually in 1917. Almost 100 years since its been used properly and still looks in good condition.
The second platform was never finished, however during the war, was used to store crockery and paintings by the royal family. They also tested different tile patterns on the second line which are now used on the Bakerloo line at Piccadilly Circus.
I think the history of this station is very interesting. Although it was once used it has not been used for 100 years now. And because it is a listed building it cannot be touched or edited in anyway. Which I think is lovely to have the building and tiles in original condition. Posters from the period still are in the station which shows how much things have changed. I feel so lucky to have been able to see this.